Growth, schools and welfare – the Autumn offensive

Team Cameron is busy planning an Autumn onslaught on education, welfare and the spirit of business designed to put fire in the bellies of the Tories. Key advisors are working up ideas to provide the PM with a programme of issues on which to focus in the run-up to Christmas. I’d expect to see the PM […]

The Coalition Government’s End of Term Report

A collection of public affairs professionals brought together by Portland have given David Cameron a solid B for his performance as PM this year. The Premier was seen as having put in a steady but slightly below par 12 months, according to the group of government relations experts. But Mr Cameron’s End of Term report […]

Taking the politics out of regulation…and regulators out of politics

In 2009 David Cameron gave a speech at a Reform event setting out what a future Government under his leadership would do to the nation’s quangos. “With a Conservative government, Ofcom as we know it will cease to exist,” he said. “Its remit will be restricted to its narrow technical and enforcement roles. It will no longer […]

The battle for Britain’s high street

There’s a new political battleground. While politicians once argued about who could be toughest on crime, now they wrangle over how tough they can be on supermarket monopolies. Supermarkets are an important feature of the high street, but things could get tough when the localism bill becomes law. Labour leader Ed Miliband kicked off the debate, […]

David Laws MP ‘Coalition Govt far preferable to irrelevance’

David Laws, the Liberal Democrat MP and former Chief Secretary to the Treasury has been telling Portland about how the Coalition Government is doing far better than he expected. Laws, one of the architects of the deal that tied his party to the Conservatives, says that being in Government and ‘making the tough choices’ is […]

Are you ready for ‘sense and respond’?

I love the film “Minority Report”, in which Tom Cruise plays a wanted criminal who gets his eyeballs replaced to escape police arrest. You may recall the scene in which he walks into a shopping mall, where his new eyes are scanned by an in-store camera. The hologram of woman shop assistant then exclaims, “Hello, Mr. […]

The pain before the gain

The next two years are going to be the toughest test for David Cameron and his top flight ministers. These are the times when political commentators get to see whether or not their judgments turn out to be true. Those, like me, who forecast Cameron had inner steel, are about to be proved right or […]

Bell Sounds For new Communications Act

The first phase of consultation on the next Communications Bill closes today. To say the review, which kicked off in May, was long awaited would be something of an understatement. In a world where the boundaries between TV, the internet and video on-demand are increasingly blurred, there are divisive issues to address on how, or if, […]

What’s on George Osborne’s Mind?

Tonight, the Chancellor George Osborne delivers the Mansion House address in the City of London. The annual Mansion House speech is a chance for the Chancellor to set out his vision – and to give the financial community an update on the economy. There’s plenty of informed speculation in the papers today about what the […]

Cameron at top of strength

Two massive u-turns risk overshadowing the news that really matters – the IMF’s endorsement of George Osborne’s plan A. Do not underestimate the importance of winning the explicit support of the markets and the IMF for the Chancellor’s deficit reduction strategy. It all-but silences Labour on the issue. It shores up the UK’s ability to […]

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